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Posted in: Judaism, Letters To Readers

Published on Sep 09, 2015 by Phyllis Chesler

Written for

A Rosh Hashanah Greeting


Dearest Friends and Family:

All too swiftly, summer has come to an end--and suddenly, or so it seems, the Jewish holidays are upon us. Time itself, or our perception of it, has speeded up. We rush from season to season.

The year 2015-2016 is the Roman calendar year. For the Jews, this Rosh Hashanah marks 5,776 years—nearly six thousand years of Jewish life on earth and counting.

And still the Messiah has not come.

Perhaps that is also the good news—because we still have time to enjoy those whom we love and the lives we have chosen; time to repent our pagan ways, ask God and each other for forgiveness, promise to act more ethically and with kindness.

This is a moment of existential peril for Jews, for Israel, and for all humanity. The place near where our ancestors first began their journey to monotheism and to the Holy Land is now being destroyed by ISIS. Innocent civilians are being tortured, murdered, or enslaved. The lucky few have fled to pestilence-infested refugee camps in the Middle East and central Asia, and via leaky boats or on foot, to Europe.

Among them are jihad infiltrators.

May this New Year see more compassionate, humanitarian rescues of the innocent.

May we have the wisdom to weed out the persecutors from the persecuted.

May this New Year be one in which the forces of civilization begin the battle against barbarism in earnest.

May God—and the IDF—continue to protect Israel; it is located in an especially dangerous neighborhood.

May Jews around the world unite. If we tried to do so, surely, that would hasten the Messiah's coming.

May each of you enjoy good health, prosperity, peace, productive work, good friends and treasured family.

May you again be written into the Book of Life.

Phyllis Chesler


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